Book Report: Farmer Boy by Laura Ingalls Wilder (1933, ?)

Book coverWow, how time flies. It’s been September since I read Little House in the Big Woods and Little House on the Prairie. I don’t know where that time has gone, but I guess I have read or finished 27(!) books since then. Which is weird because I don’t vividly remember a bunch of them. I mean, I see the titles and remember what the books were about, but I don’t remember them as having read them this year in particular. Some years, I remember a couple of books easily that I read, and I have to look again at the tally to remember the books. The Little House series are going to be the ones I remember easily from 2018. And probably 2019.

At any rate, this book deals with Almanzo Wilder as a nine-year-old boy and his experiences on his father’s farm in New York State. The Wilders are not vagabonds like the Ingalls family; they have a well-established farm with lots of livestock and acres under plow, and Mr. Wilder is a known and important man in his community. The book follows the pattern of the other books, starting in winter and following the seasons through planting, growing, and harvest. The book details how the farmers worked in those days and offers important life lessons in money management and growth. And it’s from a boy’s perspective; although the point-of-view in the books focused on Laura and her sisters doesn’t dwell too much on their being girls and this one does not completely toxically masculine, but there is a difference–and Almanzo has brothers and sisters, so the family dynamic is different.

So a fun book, a quick read, and it might very well be the first book that my boys and I have all read (not counting books that I read to them). They each read it in fifth grade leading up to a visit to Laura Ingalls Wilder’s home which is nearby (and, I have learned, I know people with firsthand knowledge of Mrs. Wilder and her life there). Hopefully, the boys and I will eventually read other books in common. Of course, now that I think of it, we might have all read a collection of cartoons or a joke book, since they raid my shelves for that sort of material from time to time. But that’s neither here nor there.

Now I need to find the rest of my collection so I can once again determine the gaps and fill them in so I can complete the series.